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  Learning to paddle straight is #1
  Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Oct-02-12 1:41 PM (EST)

You don't say whether you are trying to use a single or double paddle -- or if single blading, whether you are trying to learn single-sided correction or bilateral sit & switching.

If you are trying to learn singled-sided single blading, your absolute first priority should be to learn how to paddle straight, effortlessly and without thinking about it. You must learn how to correct yaw at the catch, during the pull, at the exit, during the recovery, and then blending all these correction techniques into your own unconsciously reactive straight ahead paddling style.

If you don't learn how to paddle straight this way, you will never fully enjoy anything else about single-sided single blading. Learning sophisticated turns in flatwater and learning how to paddle in moving currents should come later. But any kind of intelligent practice or training will eventually blend together and make sense intellectually and proprioceptively. However, you must WORK at it. It's not easy like double blading.

The Guide is a nice combo canoe and reasonable river canoe, but not ideal in my opinion for a flat water traveling canoe. But it is what it is. If you can arrow track it, you'll be golden.

Others have adequately addressed the foot entrapment issue. It is a danger in whitewater with pinning rocks, but not much of a danger on currentless, flat water. Wear low volume, flexible neoprene water shoes or booties without any snagging laces.

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